Review by it
Monday, May 16, 2016
- Vastly improved on-road performance
- Strong engines
- Superb off-road capabilities
- Poor fuel efficiency
- Interior lacks the quality feel of similarly priced rivals
This Jeep Grand Cherokee shares the same general styling and body shape of its predecessor, but now comes with a more stylish, modern and rugged look. The interior is surprisingly cramped, but you will still be able to fit five adults in easily, although the three back seat passengers may find longer journeys uncomfortable. The handling is a vast improvement over its predecessor with the steering feeling sharp and light. The permanent four-wheel drive provides plenty of grip at all times and the body control in the corners in good. The JEEP Grand Cherokee is even better off-road with its high ground clearance, low-range gearbox and four-wheel drive system allowing you to tackle pretty much any situation. All of the engines are powerful, but the diesel offers the best all round performance whilst the SRT-8 will thrill the high performance fans.
Exterior and Interior
The same general body shape and design has been carried over from the previous model, but now comes with a more stylish, modern and rugged look. The interior is surprisingly cramped for such a big looking car, but you will easily be able to fit three adults in comfortably. The boot is a decent size though and the split folding tailgate makes loading and unloading easy especially in cramped spaces where the tailgate window can be opened independently.
The interior isn't quite up to scratch compared to 4x4's in the same price bracket with plenty of hard plastics being found throughout. In terms of kit though you are unlikely to be disappointed with the petrol models each coming with their own unique trim and the diesel being the only one to give you any real choices. The Overland trim is the one to go for as it comes with everything you could ever want but the Standard and Predator trims aren't likely to disappoint either and are ideal for those with a tighter budget.
Performance and Economy
The 4.7-litre V8 is the most frugal of the petrol engines, but it still only comes in at 19mpg. The 5.7-litre V8 is even worse at 18mpg, but at least offers a fairly quick pace going from 0-60mph in 6.9 seconds. Both of these engines were dropped in 2006 due to poor sales as the 3.0 CRD is by far the better all round engine achieving 27mpg and isn't too slow going managing 60mph in 8.7 seconds, only fractionally slower than the 4.7 petrol. The SRT-8 was introduced in 2006 and is a superbly powerful unit aimed at performance junkies going from a standing start to 60mph in just 4.8 seconds, but it comes with a poor fuel efficiency of just 17mpg and that's with steady driving which is unlikely to happen as that defeats the whole purpose of owning it.
When it comes to insurance, the Grand Cherokee shouldn't prove to be any more expensive than most of its rivals.
Like to Drive
The handling in the Grand Cherokee is a vast improvement over the previous model with the steering feeling lighter and sharper. It is well controlled in the corners and provides a superbly smooth ride even when travelling over potholes. At higher speeds the ride can become slightly less refined, but it is still good for a 4x4. As you would expect from Jeep the Grand Cherokee is superb off-road with it's Quadra-drive II four-wheel drive system, high ground clearance and low-range gearbox making it a much more effective off-roader than the BMW X5 and Porsche Cayenne.
The driving position is also very comfortable and it is well insulated with minimal wind, engine and road noise.
Faults and Repairs
The Grand Cherokee has proven to be fairly fault free with no recalls though its lifetime and no major common problems. However, Jeep has proven to be more unreliable than Land Rover over the years especially in older vehicles, so make sure to check everything works well and check the undercarriage for any damage that may have been sustained from off-roading.
As for services they aren't too costly, but repairs can prove costly especially lengthier ones as Jeeps hourly rates are one of the highest in the business.